"One can't say enough about what Debbie has meant to the American," said general manager Jamie Jamison in a release. "We hope this is a great move for her and wish her every future success. A nationwide search is under way to find our restaurant's next great chef."
This marks the end of Gold's second stint as the American's executive chef. She and Michael Smith were co-executive chefs from 1994 to 2001. She left to open 40 Sardines before returning in 2008. Last year, Gold talked to The Pitch about her second act in the Crown Center kitchen:
"The second time around is different for me. The first time, it was a more collaborative thing," Gold says. "But now, it's just me figuring out what I want and what I see. I still like to talk about food with other cooks, though, because that back-and-forth is what helps to generate ideas."
In the past several years, Gold's national profile (and that of the American) has been raised by a series of appearances on reality cooking competitions. She was a cheftestant on the second and fourth seasons of Top Chef Masters. Gold won the James Beard Award in the Best Chef: Midwest category in 1999. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the American Restaurant.
Gold's last day at the Crown Center restaurant will be Saturday, April 13.